Brooklyn Bridge Park

One of my favorite places to go draw lately has been Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO. It's a short train ride from my apartment, there are great views of the bridges and the city, there's a carousel, lots of people, etc. etc. Here are a couple of drawings from one of the first times I drew there in August.

The Manhattan Bridge as seen from Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO. © Carly Larsson 2014.

The Manhattan Bridge as seen from Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO. © Carly Larsson 2014.

The Brooklyn Bridge with the Freedom Tower in the back, as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO. © Carly Larsson 2014.

The Brooklyn Bridge with the Freedom Tower in the back, as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO. © Carly Larsson 2014.

Jane's Carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park. © Carly Larsson 2014.

Jane's Carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park. © Carly Larsson 2014.

This is Jane's Carousel, formerly known as the Idora Park Merry-Go-Round, created in 1922 by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company and originally installed in Youngstown Ohio. The carousel features 3 rows of 48 hand-carved and painted wooden horses as well as 2 chariots. When Idora Park closed in 1984 the carousel was sold at auction and brought to Brooklyn for restoration. It opened at its new location on the East River in Brooklyn September 16, 2011.

The Boston Common Frog Pond & Carousel

Here are a few more drawings from my recent trip to Boston following the Charles W. Morgan on her 38th Voyage (more on that to come). This is the Frog Pond on the Boston Common, where in the summer children splash and play, and adults wade or relax in the shade on benches surrounding the pond. In the wintertime the pond is frozen for ice skating - I would love to go back and draw it then (though it might be a challenge with the cold!) 

The Frog Pond on the Boston Common. © Carly Larsson 2014

The Boston Common is located at the foot of Beacon Hill, at the southern end of the Freedom Trail. It was originally owned by William Blaxton, the first European settler of modern-day Boston and Rhode Island. He later sold it to the Puritan founders of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and beginning in the 1630s it served as a cow pasture for local families. On a more austere note, the Common was also used as a location for public hangings up until 1817. In 1775 at the start of the American Revolution, the Common was used as a camp by the British, and it was from here that British troops departed for the battles of Lexington and Concord. In 1830, cows were banned from the Common and it became the world's first public park. 

The Boston Common Carousel © Carly Larsson 2014

The Boston Common Carousel © Carly Larsson 2014

Adjacent to the Frog Pond is the Boston Common Carousel. The carousel was built in 1947 by the Allan Herschell Company of North Tonawanda, NY. The carousel features handcarved horses, as well as a zebra, dragon, rabbit, frog, cat, rooster, teacup and other less-traditional creatures.

Boston Common Carousel 3.jpg
The Boston Common Carousel © Carly Larsson 2014

It was a lot of fun to watch and draw the kids pick out their animal, then beg their families to go on again. Some would test out multiple animals, but others had a favorite that they stuck to. I think this little boy rode the dragon three times in a row. Watching the families enjoy the park and each other's company, I couldn't help but recall fond memories of my grandfather taking my sister Elise and me to the Holyoke, MA Merry-Go-Round at Heritage State Park.